New York, USA

Who We Are

Equitable Communities was formed in 2012 to understand and analyze the remarkable success of two small demonstration projects started in 2007 by The Kent brothers: one is Jagna Community Radio/Philos Health in rural Philippines and the other is the Financial Literacy Program in New York City public elementary schools. The programs we created are highly successful, award winning, self-sustaining, and constantly moving. Their success has created a demand in other underserved communities. Equitable Communities has received pledges to support organizations and individuals that want to scale up parts or all of our projects to create a network of self-sustaining communities. Over the eight years, we witnessed a creation of an effective partnership between local and established organizations united with a passion to get services to the areas that needed it most.

John Kent
John Kent has worked as a management consultant for social service organizations, conducted research studies on policy issues, and taught at Columbia University’s Schools of Public Health and Social Work. He is also an investor.

In  the  past  fifteen  years  he  has  allocated  some  of  his  resources  to projects  that  promote  personal  and  community  well  being.  In  2007, working  with  his  brother  David  Kent,  he  undertook  two  social  and economic  justice  demonstration  projects:  the  Marketplace  Fair  for Financial Stewardship and the Jagna­Philos community radio station in Jagna,  Philippines.  Both  of  these  are  collaborative  partnerships  in which local ownership empowers local communities to create tools and knowledge needed but not available.

John functions as  the President of Equitable Communities which seeks to promote social justice on  a wider scale through the power of local ownership and partnerships.

David Kent
David Kent teaches Financial and Managerial Accounting at Westchester Community College (SUNY) and Quick Books at Baruch College. In 2004 he retired from CBS Corp. after 30 years of service where he was Controller of 4 radio stations in New York City. During his cooperate career he held many diverse line and staff responsibilities.

Mr. Kent’s educational background includes an MBA in Accounting from Fordham. He is an Enrolled Agent (IRS) and a certified Quick Books Advisor . After college graduation he served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Liberia, West Africa.

Kimberly Bliss
Executive Director

Kimberly has worked with John and David Kent’s philanthropic programs as a Project Developer since 2007, and helped found Equitable Communities, Inc. as a community empowered non-profit. Her work has brought together the arts and financial security, with a degree in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College, a certificate from the Community Word Project’s (CWP) Teaching Artist Training and Internship Program (TATIP), and financial planning course work at Baruch College, CUNY. In previous lives, Kimberly was the General Manager of an East Village restaurant for over 10 years, the Associate Director of The Project art gallery, founder of PiggyBankBlues (currently on hiatus), a financial blog for the not-so-nine-to-fiver, and a DJ in Barcelona.

Alison Pepper
LMSW: Program Director

Alison has worked with the Equitable Communities team since its inception in 2007 in a variety of roles, and helped found Equitable Communities, Inc. with programming driven by community empowerment. She recently graduated from Hunter’s Silverman School of Social Work where she received her master’s degree. Alison has worked to support youth and families for the last ten years in New York City and Portland, OR with a number of nonprofit organizations including; Sunnyside Community Services, Bent on Learning, The Shambhala Meditation Center of NY, and the Portland Early Learning Project.

Bharat Koirala

Bharat Koirala is known in Asia as a journalists who has spent many years in promoting a development approach to journalism, an effort to use the mass media in the service of the masses. In this effort he has worked closely with many regional and international organizations with similar interests leading to the establishment of press institutes, network of journalists and other innovative programs. More lately he was involved in the establishment and operation of community radio in his country that has seen a dramatic transformation in its media structure. For his work in the media he was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award, regarded as Asia's Nobel Prize. He has been working as a consultant for Equitable Communities in its projects, particularly in the establishment of the community radio station in Jagna.